The thing which is so astonishing about the Prisoner, is his single-mindedness. He resigned his job, in effect walking away from his colleagues and yet they are the first people he goes running back to the moment he is able, and expects them to help him. But isn’t that possibly where the trouble lies? I mean he resigned his job, for whatever reason, why should ’they’ care what happens to him? Why should his former colleagues be expected to help him at all? It would seem to me that despite having resigned his job, the Prisoner still knows where his loyalties lie. And the Colonel in ‘Many Happy Returns,’ does he help his former colleague out of some sense of loyalty? Certainly Thorpe has no sense of loyalty towards his ex-colleague, and is not afraid to demonstrate through his sarcastic remarks and scepticism.
The reader will recall how it was during ‘The Chimes of Big Ben,’ when No.6 had been betrayed by both the Colonel and Fotheringay. And yet when the opportunity of escape afforded itself to the Prisoner, as soon as he could upon arriving back in London, went running straight back to the Colonel! The obvious question is, had the Prisoner learned nothing at all from his previous experience with the Colonel and Fotheringay? What I mean is, how did the Prisoner know that it would not be the same Colonel with Fotheringay he would meet with in ‘Many Happy Returns,’ instead of a different Colonel and Thorpe? And even so, the Prisoner had been betrayed once by his ex-colleagues during ‘The Chimes of Big Ben,’ so why go running back to them a second time? It is obvious that the Prisoner cannot trust them. Yet I expect that he saw that only ‘they’ could help him with his problem of the Village. But isn’t it possible that it was his former colleagues who had him abducted to the Village in the first place? And if that is correct, then each time the Prisoner goes running back to them, it’s hardly surprising that he ends up back in the Village each time. And I do include his return to them in both ‘Do Not Forsake Me Oh My Darling,’ and ‘Fall out.’ The one in which the Prisoner could not prove who he was, but to be perfectly honest he didn’t actually go running back to his ex-colleagues, he was taken back, and to the day that he was due to resign his job! And ‘Fall Out,’ well after managing to escape the Village and return to London, the Prisoner as ever once again demonstrated his single mindedness by driving off back to his ex-colleagues just as soon as he was able! And that is probably where the Prisoner was going wrong. Because each time he attempted to, or each time he succeeded in reaching his former colleagues, some time after, he found himself back in the Village!
And the Village of course is not where the Prisoner wanted to be. It is rumoured amongst some aficionados of ’the Prisoner’ series, that after resigning his job the Prisoner was going away to some exotic tropical beach some south seas island perhaps, that according to a pair of photographs the Prisoner packs into one of his suitcases. Well at least the Village has a beach! The photographs are not even photographs! Well they are, but two photographs in two separately folded magazines! And the Prisoner’s airline ticket isn’t for anywhere exotic in the south seas, but somewhere much closer to home. Not that the Prisoner could not have gone onto somewhere more exotic from there.
Anyway it’s all purely academic, as the Prisoner was too late. They came for him before he was ready, in all probability he was expecting them. Nerve gassed, his unconscious body placed in a coffin, and abducted by a pair of Undertakers, who to any passer by would simply appear to be going about their lawful occasions, in other words their own business. Not that the Prisoner knew anything about that, for he had no idea who his immediate abductors were. That’s why he was unperturbed when in ‘Fall Out,’ as he was about to climb into his Lotus 7, that black hearse drove passed. And there he goes again, driving off back to his former colleagues, which can only have one result, the Prisoner will be back in the Village before he knows it! I bet he wrote that letter of resignation in the cage whilst on his way back to London, he certainly didn’t enter the house to write it, because it will be upon his person as he storms into that office to hand in his resignation. Slamming down that letter upon the desk, and enforcing it with his fist, upsetting the cup in its saucer set upon the tea plate again! Well he’s been here before you see, such is the man’s stubbornness, single-mindedness, and complete inability to see the blatantly obvious.
Be seeing you